Man and the Bioshpere programme

© L. Louw

Since 1971, the Man and the Biosphere Programme has endeavored to improve the relationship between people and the environment. Combining natural and social sciences as well as economics, education and capacity building, the MAB programme has promoted the sustainable use and conservation of biological diversity.

MAB has worked to establish regional and thematic networks as well as partnerships with UN agencies, governments, NGOs, academia and the private sector in order to meet global challenges and generate long-term impacts.

In Nepal, MAB programme was introduced already in 1979. During UNESCO Regional Meeting in Kathmandu, concrete commitments were made to establish the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development, better known as ICIMOD, under the MAB programme. In the 80s and 90s, there were research activities under the MAB programme. Due to the political instability, MAB activities diminished until 2014 when Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation (DNPWC) requested UNESCO’s assistance in identifying the potential site for the first biosphere reserve in Nepal.

This Office in collaboration with the DNPWC, and Nepal National Commission for UNESCO, identified that there is a greater need to understand the concept of biosphere reserves and its application to Nepal since the mechanism of implementation of its interdisciplinary work on-ground under the framework of the MAB programme is less known to the Nepalese stakeholders.

At the moment several interaction meetings have been held during 2015 and 2016 and the discussion suggested Annapurna Conservation Area, Kanchenjunga Conservation Area and a joint areas of Langtang National Park and Shivapuri Conservation Area as potential sites for biosphere reserve nomination. Nepal MAB committee has been engaged in several international and regional meetings in the year 2016, such as the 3rd  Asia Pacific Biosphere Reserves Network (APBRN) Strategic Meeting in Indonesia and the 8th   South and Central Asia Man and Biosphere Network meeting in Kazakhstan.

Back to top